The new Plex for Google TV - Plex Blog

The new Plex for Google TV

, | 18 Jul 2013 | by 82 Comments

As most of you probably know, we recently released a brand new Plex for Android app. It’s beautiful, fast, buttery smooth and people have been enjoying it on all different shapes and sizes of Android devices.

The new app runs fine on the Google TV, but we wanted to take some time to make it feel really great on big-screen devices in general, so we’ve been working hard on some updates to that end. Not only does it work much better on a large screen, we’ve also made it such that you can switch the layout dynamically on any device to the “TV” style (under Application Layout in settings). So if you’re hooking up your Android mobile device to a TV, you can easily change the layout so that it’s optimized for your couch-viewing, popcorn-chewing pleasure.

We’re releasing it right now for our awesome PlexPass members, and in a week we’ll be pushing it to the store to replace the existing Google TV application. Here are some screenshots to give you a sense of what the new layouts look like.

(The new release is also massively faster at loading images, go try it right now!)

Home  User

Search

Show Preplay

Music Section  with filters

Album Preplay

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82 Comments so far

  1. Mark "Ninja" Walker July 18th, 2013 11:18 pm

    First!

    Yet works awesomely on my OUYA :D

  2. Josh Dinsdale July 18th, 2013 11:19 pm

    Does this mean I can finally buy a Google TV Device? :D

  3. Matt July 18th, 2013 11:33 pm

    Not only is that awesome but if they are shots of your own Plex server you also have excellent taste in music!

  4. jagaskywalker July 18th, 2013 11:34 pm

    Another release and another disappointment for the “good old” mac users and Plex Media Theater… Is there an estimation on when Plex Media Theater is going to be updated for everyone ?

    7 months have passed since the plexpass only version appeared… in the meantime the new xbmc has already had a couple of updates….

    I am actually following a very interesting development there about playing 3D movies.. ( http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?tid=147285&page=46 ) and here nothing, nothing nothing…

    We feel totally abandoned…. much has changed since the origins of plex…

  5. Cmtahm July 18th, 2013 11:42 pm

    Love it! Amazing work guys. I love to watch plex grow it is truly a great experience. Thank you so much for all your hard work and love being a plexpass member. I just happen to look on plex right as Ian posted the update. Installed it right away.. The speed increase on this update is awesome. Now we just need the indexing to work with the remote and to be able to change aspect ratio and it’s perfect. Thanks!!
    Chris

  6. plexuser July 18th, 2013 11:45 pm

    “Does this mean I can finally buy a Google TV Device?”

    If you want a device that does not support DTS or passthrough go ahead.

  7. Mike July 19th, 2013 12:07 am

    LOL Josh Good one and so true :)

  8. Michiel July 19th, 2013 12:51 am

    @jagaskywalker: It is in the works and available for Plexpass users already, the new version that is. And as far as I understood it is getting close to a new release.

  9. Jim July 19th, 2013 2:13 am

    Does this mean I should uninstall Plex for Sony Google TV and install this?

  10. ianb July 19th, 2013 2:18 am

    @Jim – We’ll be updating the Plex for Sony Google TV soon, but if you have a Plex Pass you can run both applications side by side.

  11. simonx July 19th, 2013 3:10 am

    Please update the icons under “my library”!

    Great work on the new interface!

  12. snikay July 19th, 2013 3:15 am

    awesome!
    i hope this style is going to all Plex-Clients :)

  13. Rich July 19th, 2013 4:26 am

    Looks great :D One thing I still think Plex really needs, however, is better music controls. There are so many options missing and yes, I get that Plex is more of a video thing, but I’ve got one box sat under my TV for all my media and really I’d like to be able to use it as my default music playback device. Currently, it’s OK if you just want to play an album, but there’s no shuffle, repeat etc.

  14. slm4996 July 19th, 2013 4:26 am

    The settings buttons do not work on my nexus 10 when in TV mode. Also, how to you play to another device when in TV mode?

  15. ianb July 19th, 2013 4:34 am

    @sim4996 – The layout is really design for TV connected devices, not tablets. It does not (currently) support playing to another device, as it didn’t seem a common use case to use your television to control another device. This is the same reason why sync is not currently supported, as again it’s more of a mobile orientated feature. However, we do hope to get sync in moving forward, as we know some people want it. The missing settings button is likely to be an incompatibility between the tablet using a TV type layout, but we’ll investigate to try and fix.

  16. enjoyfebruary July 19th, 2013 4:49 am

    …and you will know us by the trail of dead whitespace that was previously unused by the old Android app. +1 to the update and +1 for the band. :)

  17. Glen Lancaster July 19th, 2013 7:27 am

    Will you be releasing a version for the ROKU soon?

  18. TTlequals0 July 19th, 2013 7:56 am

    The only thing plex for android needs is on screen volume controls other than that good work

  19. Bellboy July 19th, 2013 7:59 am

    Just out of curiosity, how many people here in the Plex forums world actually have a Google TV? Just wondering if the user base is small and if so does that really warrant development for this platform. I thought GTV was on its death bed as I haven’t heard much news about it lately.

  20. Kyle July 19th, 2013 8:09 am

    Finally!!! You guys ROCK! This looks awesome and can’t wait to get home to try it! Keep up the great work!

  21. Eddie July 19th, 2013 8:26 am

    This all looks awesome, and I’m so glad I’ve jumped into the Plex universe, but I’m trying to figure out which app to install on my Sony Google TV. I am a PlexPass subscriber (lifetime) and I currently have Plex for PlexPass and Plex for Google TV installed on it. Plex for Google TV looks great, but I can’t navigate it with the Harmony remote I use for that TV. Plex for PlexPass does work with the remote I have. So, do I need the Plex for Google TV app? Should I just uninstall it and use Plex for PlexPass?

    Thanks!

  22. TheDBP July 19th, 2013 9:29 am

    I’ve been looking forward to this for soooo looooong! Can’t wait to try it out on my Z902 Android stick. Thanks for all the hard work! You just made that Z902 MUCH more useful. Thanks!!

  23. Tom July 19th, 2013 10:13 am

    Bellboy,
    I have a google tv and use plex all the time – Currently there is over 26,500+ members in the google tv community that is on google and that does not count the ones on facebook , twitter, etc that have not found the community.

    Don’t forget that google tv’s are not just tvs but tons of buddy boxes as well and I for one love that plex supports it.
    Tom

  24. Skip July 19th, 2013 11:46 am

    This is terrific! Have a Roku and Google TV connected to the same TV and have really been preferring the Google TV lately. I can’t wait to see what you’ve done (as there was a little room for improvement), and thanks for being proactive on this!

  25. The Jay July 19th, 2013 11:59 am

    I’d have to agree with JaggaSkywalker and a couple of others. I can’t see why so much development effort goes into making the android app look good on Google TV (hands up anyone who owns one? Anyone? Thought so) YET the Mac Plex Home theatre has received a tiny handful of beta updates in the last SEVEN months.

    I’ve been paying my Plexpass subscription for months trying to support PHT Mac client development but the serious lack of development interest unfortunately means I’m going to pull the plug.

    The Mac client is where it all started with Plex yet have a look at the Release announcement forum and compare development activity vs many of the other projects. Heck it’s not even NEAR public release as in the last post there Tobias says the version is “considered more Alpha than beta” !!!

    Please guys we need some more effort on the Mac client!

  26. Sankyou July 19th, 2013 12:47 pm

    That Revue I bought keeps getting better and better. Props to Barkley and all involved!

  27. Bob Ketcham July 19th, 2013 1:22 pm

    Thanks! Looks very good!

    Is is my imagination, or have major improvements been made to “Play to” functionality. I just tried starting videos from my Mac via the Browser, an iPhone and and old Android (Plex for Android – old version running on 2.1). All worked. Without the Plex for Google TV (new Plexpass version) running on the Google TV. Can’t recall when that last happened!

    One request… it would be really nice if we could choose (in Settings?) the startup screen for the app. I really don’t want to start with what’s On Deck. I want to start with My Library.

    Again, Thanks!

  28. Philnick July 19th, 2013 3:39 pm

    Please pay some attention to transcoding music streaming to Android phones – my library is mainly in FLAC, which burns up my Verizon bandwidth to stream it.

    Please add the option to set the client to tell the server to transcode FLAC music files (not just video files) to mp3 at 96k or 128k over cellular but to stream the original file (its current behavior all the time) when we’re on WiFi.

    It can’t be that hard to do. If you can do it for video, doing it for audio should be even easier.

  29. Gene July 19th, 2013 9:02 pm

    Élan, you must be aware there are sync issues on the Ouya with Keplar. I’m miffed that a release like this would not also address the audio problems. I have XBMC installed too with Plexbmc as a check and there are no sync issues. Plus, XBMC has calibration for overscan. The Ouya doesn’t seem to accommodate overscan mod or at least doesn’t do it affectively or maybe there’s a fix I’m not aware of but be sure nice if Plex could offer calibration.

  30. Field July 19th, 2013 10:09 pm

    The situation with Plex Home Theater is getting pretty ridiculous.. Your “flagship app”? Really? Because doesn’t look like it’s getting any attention.

    I feel like Plex team is abandoning it’s roots. I do not know how large the PHT user base is (compared to Google TV , Android or iOS devices), and I do understand that you need to put the food on your tables, but with months of little to no activity I no longer feel like it’s the product I want to support, so I’m pulling the plug on my PlexPass subscription. Like TheJay few posts above me, I waited patiently and paid hoping that my favourite media player will see any action, but few months of “development” and it’s still considered “more alpha than beta”…thanks, I’ll put my money elsewhere.

  31. Cmtahm July 19th, 2013 11:18 pm

    They are not abandoning PHT lol. But, everyone has to understand they are just a few guys. When they start on developing something they don’t want to stop in the middle. If you look at it for the plex for gtv. It has not been updated since October. A lot of people in gtv forums were asking the same thing about abondoning the gtv app. Developing takes time. Frankly the way they push out updates is unreal. You would never get this support in any other software running on this many devices.
    They will get to PHT but, I’m sure they felt plex for android was in need of a lot more work. And since they had to start from scratch it took a lot more time. I use PHT and GTV. I am so glad they put the time into the GTV. It is a great device that I don’t have to worry about transcoding because it direct plays almost anything you throw at it. I am sure they will get to it but, it does take time.

  32. Cmtahm July 19th, 2013 11:32 pm

    People will always be unhappy when “their” app is not in big development. It amazes me at the demand we of the plex community expect from the devs. It’s a lot of work and I’m sure they like some of the negative comments because it strives them to do better.

    They just brought out an amazing new app for GTV and people are complaining its not the app they wanted developed. What about the people paying plexpass that want the GTV developed.

    It is a family and you can’t make everyone happy. But, don’t be greedy either. I’m not speaking for them but, i can tell you, you can take your money elsewhere. You will never find a house for your media like this. And support…….. Forget about it. You want to complain about the app you like not being developed then go somewhere else because that’s how the rest of them are……. Sorry for another second post. I was reading the rest of the comments and it’s crazy how negative people are. Like you paid alllllllll this money. A video game costs as much as there lifetime subscription…… Sorry thanks plex team you guys keep it up.
    Chris

  33. elan July 20th, 2013 4:27 pm

    @Field/The Jay ~ we’re not abandoning PHT. Whenever we announce a big step forward for platform X, everyone on other platforms get annoyed. The truth of the matter is that we’re such a small team, we can’t release updates in lockstep for all platforms at the same time. We’ve been making good progress on PHT, having taken the time to re-sync to upstream XBMC code and insert much needed changes to modernize the communication between PHT and the media server. Sadly the re-sync brought new bugs (impossible to avoid), and happily, one of the main PHT debs had a baby, hence why it’s taking longer than we’d hoped to get it out.

  34. elan July 20th, 2013 4:29 pm

    @Gene ~ yep, I’m aware of some A/V sync issues. We use the native Android video playback system, so it’s possible this is an issue with that system on the Ouya, it’s not clear to me yet. We believe overscan should be handled in the underlying OS/desktop as well.

  35. HoZy July 20th, 2013 11:01 pm

    Works great on my OUYA, Finally getting somewhere!
    Can’t wait for more improvements :)

  36. David July 22nd, 2013 4:54 pm

    It looks like its about time you guys added Ouya to your connected devices page

  37. simonx July 23rd, 2013 4:31 am

    Can’t find Plexsync icons or “go offline” mode in this layout. Is it a feature or a bug?

  38. elan July 23rd, 2013 10:29 am

    @simonx ~ we’ve left sync out of the first big-screen release, just because we wanted to get it out the door sooner (and since most people on a GTV aren’t syncing anyway…)

  39. simonx July 23rd, 2013 8:14 pm

    OH ok thank you elan :)

  40. Jonty July 24th, 2013 7:48 am

    I think this is much better than the mobile interface on my 10″ tablet! I hope you can add the play-to functionality to it. This + chromecast for my TV and some sort of chromecast-esque daemon for my PC and i’ll be the happiest PlexPasser ever.

  41. karrun July 24th, 2013 10:20 am

    Does that mean my Revue will finally be getting an update?

  42. Francois July 24th, 2013 4:04 pm

    Any chance we’ll get something like this for the roku, from what I understand, a lot more people have a Roku than a Google TV device… a lot more.

  43. Johnboy July 25th, 2013 3:57 am

    Will you be supporting Chromecast? I’m very interested in the idea, as right now my non-smart TV is hooked up directly to my Plex server/media center. Chromecast, or something like it, would help immensely if we could run Plex off of it. Yes, I understand the Server would work (running from Chrome), but what about the desktop app?

  44. Chris July 25th, 2013 5:51 am

    Dear PlexGod

    Please support the Chromecast dongle that was just released by Google.

    Amen

  45. Lisa July 25th, 2013 2:18 pm

    I have had plex for my google tv for over a year. With this new update it does not find my plex server now! The options are harder to use and I have no idea how to make it find my server.

  46. DanJ July 25th, 2013 4:34 pm

    First: Thank You Plex team for the work on the GoogleTV version, it makes my Plex Server useful again. Changing the view to folders causes continual crashing, so I’m stuck in Series View, but I’m happy to have something that works and shows the Subtitles! It almost rivals the Roku version (almost)

  47. Lisa July 26th, 2013 7:50 am

    The new update is not finding my plex server. The other google tv apps can see my plex server and even play from it..but not my plex! Can someone help or check it out please! Thanks

  48. Travis July 26th, 2013 1:46 pm

    UGH. Last night the wife & I watched out shows on the old Plex app. Been working fine for a long time. Today it updated & now it will not show my Plex servers.

  49. elan July 26th, 2013 1:55 pm

    If the new Google TV app isn’t finding your servers, make sure you have at least 0.9.7.28 (the latest version from plexapp.com/getplex).

  50. Ben July 27th, 2013 3:45 pm

    Does its support fast forward and rewind yet. I did like the old app but went back to Samsung hub due to Google TV not having a fast forward or rewind feature. If it does now ill come back.

  51. john July 27th, 2013 9:52 pm

    Is the sony google tv app going to be updated this year?

  52. elan July 28th, 2013 9:19 am

    @john: yes!

  53. Steve July 28th, 2013 10:35 pm

    Grumble. Upgraded server on the same network, per your instructions above, STILL NOTHING, after stopping and starting servers and app. Used to work great. :(

  54. Steve July 28th, 2013 10:58 pm

    p.s. (and signing out and signing in to my Plex account, uninstalling reinstalling, running server from a second machine – Plex app on Sony Google TV still can no longer find my servers.)

  55. D. Smith July 29th, 2013 1:15 pm

    I have 3 Logitech Revue’s and I’ve made the mistake of “updating” 2 of them with the new version of Plex for Google TV (Android). Now, I cannot play ANYTHING from the channels! All I get it “Sorry, this video cannot be played” no matter what settings I try. Where can I download the previous version of Plex for Google TV?

    I’m EXTREMELY disappointed…

  56. karrun July 30th, 2013 8:09 am

    D. Smith, my update for Revue works fine and looks great. maybe try a reset of the Revue?

  57. Dave July 30th, 2013 8:56 am

    I have a roku and 2 google tv devices – the vizio co-star. I totally prefer the vizio co-star google tv devices over Roku.
    This was a great update.. AND YES! the vizio co-star google TV devices support dts and passthrough.
    The roku I have is roku 3, and the vizio co-star puts it to shame, all for the same price.
    the only downside of the vizio co-star is it doesn’t support dual band wireless so you are stuck on 2.4.

  58. Steve July 30th, 2013 9:04 am

    Since there’s no answer to my question from a couple days ago, new question – where do I get info on Plex for Sony Internet TV and how to install? I’ve never heard any mention of it except in this forum. My Sony Google TV only let’s me install the non-Sony version. When I log in to “Google Play” on my computer, I can find this supposed Sony version, but it says “your Sony Internet TV” is not compatible. HELP.

    If this question is baffling, how do install the OLD Plex Google TV app, which worked great??

  59. Steve July 30th, 2013 10:16 am

    Update to my posts above: I finally got it working, after figuring out how to “manually connect” to my server (that took little awhile with guesswork involved, couldn’t seem to find any info on plexapp.com how to do this except for port number required). Works now, plex still can’t find local servers that were not manually connected.
    Ignore post asking how to get plex for sony google TV.
    Finally: the plex update seems nice.

  60. Nate August 1st, 2013 1:03 pm

    I’m having the same problem Steve, can you help me out at all?

  61. bobbrown August 5th, 2013 7:32 am

    You say: “As you may know, one of the things available to PlexPass members is a forum in which people vote on their favorite feature requests. It’s a great way for us to see what the community wants, and – let’s face it – it’s especially valuable data coming from those who support us financially”.
    I bought the App for three different accounts, and got at least another three to buy it, I thought I was a supporter too. But obviously I am not.

  62. elan August 5th, 2013 9:28 am

    @bobbrown ~ you’re absolutely a supporter, and we very much appreciate it. It’s not feasible for us to link up every app purchaser with access to a private forum, as you might imagine. What are the features that are important to you?

  63. spotted-dog August 5th, 2013 11:01 am

    So I gotta ask, what is the preferred Google TV device? I was looking at the Sony NSZ-GS7 or GS8. They seem to get good reviews when running Plex. Anybody like? I would like to get rid of my Win HTPC boxes as they are too finicky. Also, my Roku is too flaky!

  64. bobbrown August 11th, 2013 2:58 am

    Well now that you ask, :-) I think the App is missing a possibility to jump x seconds forward or backward in playback mode, the App has these buttons in controller mode for jumping back and forth and I think they should be in playback a well. Just my two cents. :-0

  65. HanzP August 13th, 2013 10:20 pm

    How do you mount the usb port on on the Google Tv box? Hope its supported – the new setup is awesome, but that would be a dealbreaker for me. Thanks in advance for info.

  66. Raphael August 14th, 2013 12:01 am

    Very cool… Nice Work!

  67. Bob August 24th, 2013 12:20 pm

    Have been using Sony NSZ-GS7 for a while… would be nice to see MKV file support…

  68. James August 29th, 2013 3:59 am

    The last update has broken Plex for Googletv. The app no longer sees my server, even though my phone and my roku both do, and I have updated, uninstalled, reinstalled,logged in to myplex, cleared the cache. Nothing seems to work and it looks like I am not the only one with this problem.

  69. ain August 31st, 2013 7:16 am

    After Apple shot the PlexConnect a week ago I swapped to Google TV an the new Plex app. Was working fin until I made the firmware update on the sony nsz gs7. After that films still work, but Music (mpeg4) an Pictures are not. Getting tired of that Kind of stuff. Any idea what went wrong this time?

  70. JM August 31st, 2013 9:17 am

    Can someone please explain to me why I don’t see “Now Playing” ANYWHERE in my settings or on the dashboard. I have a PlexPass and have yet to figure this feature out. I’ve searched and read to no avail.

  71. elan August 31st, 2013 10:21 am

    @JM ~ Now Playing appears automatically when people are streaming from you. The server needs to be signed into a PlexPass-enabled myPlex account.

  72. ChrisIanSmith89 September 1st, 2013 7:25 am

    So I have a question. Did they somehow add DTS pass though on this update?? If I downloaded a movie and it had DTS audio, it would only play in 2.1. Since this update, I can watch a movie using Plex, that has DTS Audio and it plays in 5.1 surround. I had a Revue and as everyone knows they are no longer updating it. But since the Plex update I can watch movies in 5.1 surround with DTS Audio.

  73. elan September 1st, 2013 9:23 am

    @ChrisIanSmith89 ~ The revue is not capable of DTS passthrough. Like you’re seeing DTS transcoded to AC3 5.1 on-the-fly.

  74. JM September 3rd, 2013 2:50 am

    My Plex server is signed in with my PlexPass account. However, it still doesn’t work. Even after I signed out/in it still doesn’t work.

  75. Neil September 5th, 2013 4:13 am

    Seems like it always transcodes now even when it doesn’t need to. Found the option in settings to force direct play but now I guess it will never transcode even if it needs to? (Revue)

  76. Subodh September 6th, 2013 3:20 pm

    Plex is broken on revue. Please help. Works on roku and phone.

  77. Marco October 7th, 2013 7:29 am

    Hi,
    I am using the RKM MK802 IV tv stick with Rockchip 3188 Quad core and android 4.2.2.
    When start playback a movie, appears only a black screen. My server is ok, on my galaxy S4 phone and on iPad the movie is ok. Help!!

    Many thanks,
    Marco.

  78. riverflow October 16th, 2013 3:17 am

    Hi, I’ve exactly same issue with Marco.
    (I am using the RKM MK802 IV tv stick with Rockchip 3188 Quad core and android 4.2.2. too)
    iPad, iPhone’s Plex client & android phone (Samsung Galaxy S2) Plex Client is good, but in MK802IV,
    When start playback a movie, appears only a black screen. I must push “enter” key. (especially SD Videos, not HD Videos)
    Please consider about this problem.

    Many thanks

  79. Stein October 18th, 2013 5:21 am

    You guys that developed Plex are amazing!! And you who write on this forum is amazing to! Cause the gratitude you show tells me that you are great persons cause gratitude is the most important in the world! My wife and I have started to use Plex yesterday and I can’t wait to become as experienced in this that I am in Chess :) But I have one big wish: Can anyone tell me how I can connect my Ipad to my tv wirelessly and preferably without buying some equipments or gadgets? Well gadgets are ok as long as they are wireless :)
    I have a Phillips LED-Tv. Best regards from Stein in Norway who are planning to buy a lifetime Plexpass, just need some help with how to use it :)

  80. Q October 19th, 2013 3:43 pm

    Will this app work on the chromecast?

  81. Andrew December 14th, 2013 5:46 am

    I’ve spent all day trying to figure all this out. I just installed plex for Google tv on my Revue and the media server thingy on my pc but I can’t for the life of me get them to do anything. It all sounds so easy but I’ve wasted a whole day searching for a simple step by step guide and got nowhere. Is it not possible anymore or something? I just wanna watch movies on my tv from my pc. Please Help!

  82. Brian December 31st, 2013 12:56 pm

    I cannot seem to playback videos from my Canon DSLR(mov files) or from my GoPro(mp4 files) without consistant stopping and starting. A simple one minute video from each takes five minutes to play with several pauses in the middle and extended delay between pressing play and the video actually starting to play. I know the Sony Google TV box has a 10/100Mbps Ethernet port. The rest of my network is full Gigabit up to that point including my server. When will the speed of Plex be up to par with the rest of the world? It even takes several seconds just to display a simple picture full screen.
    I’ve tried the video settings in the Google TV Plex app to changing anywhere from 480p to 1080p and everywhere in between. There are no wireless connections associated with Plex.

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